Hoop of Learning

Program Overview

The Maricopa Community Colleges District HOOP Of Learning (HOL) Program is a scholarship-based, high school-to-college bridge program for American Indian students in high school. It gives students the opportunity to earn college credits while still attending high school. The Hoop of Learning program helps students navigate the college enrollment processes and provides them with support services to ensure academic success. and is specifically tailored to meet the academic and cultural needs of American Indian Students. HOL focused on empowering our American Indian youth by using the universal concept of a medicine wheel (hence Hoop Of Learning), which focuses on Emotional, Mental, Physical & Spiritual health of well-being.


The HOOP of Learning program was implemented in the summer of 1995 in response to concerns voiced by Native parents in an urban high school district in Phoenix, Arizona. These voices influenced the high school and a local community college which formed a partnership committee to provide an educational program for Native students, now referred to as the Hoop of Learning. The HOOP of Learning is a high school-to-college bridge program. It is designed to foster cultural resilience and career development among Native Students.


To encourage, enable, and empower Native American students to complete high school and transition successfully to higher education. The Hoop of Learning is an indigenous design based on the traditional Native world view of a circle (Hoop) of lifelong development. It was established from a need to help Native American students stay in school and pursue a college degree. The program was designed to meet the academic and cultural needs of Native American students.

SCC is the fifth Maricopa Community College to implement the Hoop of Learning. The program was designed to reduce or eliminate the financial barriers that Native Americans face, while targeting high school students to transition in the college setting. The Hoop of Learning provides a better understanding of college, improves graduation rates, allows students to take culturally relevant curriculum, increases retention in higher education and empowers Native American students to reach their goals.

A basic tenet of the Hoop of Learning program is the belief in the importance of young people developing strong positive cultural identities and integrity. Collaboration of student families, program staff, and community partners replicates a traditional tribal community in which children's progress is monitored and facilitated by a broad network of relations. As in traditional settings, students are expected to fulfill their responsibility to prepare themselves to contribute to the well-being of the community.


  • Earn college credit
  • Increase academic achievements
  • Scholarship for tuition, books and fees
  • Increased preparedness
  • Specialized advisement
  • Participation in activities to enhance growth
  • Start on a career path
  • Interact with Native American students with same goals

Scottsdale Community College - Hoop of Learning